If you are up on Blogging, you may have heard about or used Trackback. It was designed to provide a method of notification between websites. The mechanics are quite simple, site A sends a Trackback ping to site B. (The ping in this context means a small message sent from one webserver to another.)
Yeah, so? Ah … glad you asked. Guess where the newest haven for Spammers is? Yep, Trackbacks. This comes under the “nothing is sacred” heading. Sure, you can spend time setting up bogus Trackbacks by hand, but it is time consuming and probably won’t yield great results on any but the most highly trafficked sites. But, create a robot to do your bidding and Trackbacks can yield a zillion clickthroughs from unsuspecting blog readers.
I hate that I have to write about this. The easy solution is disable Trackbacks on your blog. Sadly, that also removes a valuable marketing resource from your blogging arsenal. Of course, you can monitor your Trackbacks manually … ugh! Or, try one of automated Trackback spam filters like Spam Karma, Spaminator or Three Strikes.
Right now, blogs are very, very search engine friendly. It’s the way that they are created coupled with RSS that make them so. As the spammers hit Trackbacks, how long will it be before we see spam RSS feeds hiding in seemingly legit places? There’s going to be a new, robust business here – any takers?